BAGUIO CITY – Couples married in the city twenty-five years ago will reaffirm their vows on a pre-Valentines date, February 13, as part of marriage week celebration.
The re-affirmation or renewal of vows was announced during the media Kapihan at the Senior Citizen Center with Councilor Elmer Datuin, CSWDO personnel Liza Bulayungan, Bernardina Tabin of the Civil Registry Office and Ceasar Jose Damasco of the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center (BGHMC), where the origin and concept of marriage week was expounded, with highlight on strong marriages’ importance and impact to the community and nation-building.
Accordingly, the Philippines is the first in Asia to join marriage week activities, an international movement amongst 26 countries.
Social Worker Bulayungan intimated that marriage week activities are veered towards strengthening, improving and restoring couples’ relationships, with support from different groups and agencies including the CSWDO.
The launching and unfurling of calendar of activities happened last February 4 during the city hall flag raising ceremonies; with the presentation of couples’ 7-day challenge. This entails writing of love notes to spouse, vowing not to say anything negative to spouse for a week, a 30 minute spouse’ conversation without mobile phone and TV, praying together, posting on social media of spouse’ routine or good traits, daily goal sharing with spouse, and intimacy.
On February 9 and 10 at 6:30 to 8:30AM, a Zumba class is scheduled at Malcolm square; in lieu of the earlier planned couples’ fun run. According to fitness advocate Damasco, recognition shall be given to early registering couples, most energetic, youngest and oldest, with individual awards to the darling of the crowd, “hatawera” and “hatawero” zumba dancers. To emphasize the coming hearts day, attendees are encouraged to don red exercise attires.
As part of pre-marriage counseling services, a visit to the Regional Social Services Center in La Trinidad, a venue for children 1-5 years of age given up for alternative parental care, is scheduled by the DSWD –regional office.
According to regional office representative Bernard Cadaoan, visits to centers for disadvantaged persons due to dysfunctional situations may also be scheduled. Said activities direct attention to social problems arising from problematic or difficult family foundations.
Free entrance and carousel ride is offered for married couples at SM Skyranch on February 12, 13 and 14, on a one-time availment only. Couples are requested to bring their marriage certificate; and proof of residency in Baguio to avail of the offer.
Pre-marriage counseling (PMC) is also scheduled at the City Civil Registry Office on the following dates, Feb. 7, 8AM to 12 noon; Feb. 8, 1-5PM; Feb. 11, 12 and 13, 1 to 5PM; and Feb. 14, 8AM to 12 noon. Again a part of marriage week celebration, PMC is back on the twice-a-week schedule after Feb. 14.
A romantic couples dinner date with a discount from participating restaurants is slated on Valentine’s day. According to Councilor Datuin, only the Solibao-Ganza-Canao chain of restaurants’ management agreed to extend at least ten percent discount on couple’s meals during marriage week.
By: Julie G. Fianza